“I dare you to look at me.” The demanding voice of movement from Camille A. Brown & Dancers.
Camille A. Brown’s BLACK GIRL: Linguistic Play
“I dare you to look at me.”
That is the boldness of Camille A. Brown dancing. Every motion is a statement that demands my attention, shouting, “this is who I am, this is where I came from. Now look at me. I dare you.” Her rhythmic energy contrasts the low thrum of the bass guitar and it becomes no longer a performance but a real piece of life. Camille dances with the truth; I can see it in her expression, in the dauntless commitment to her movement. This is her, raw and unforgettable, insisting that we hear the story she has to tell us…
Her childhood as a black female is explored with vivacity.
Two black girls bond through the beat of their own feet in double Dutch and dance. They bounce with rhythms all their own, solo and together, praising each other’s individuality, praising each other’s joined creativity in a playful ode to friendship.
The jealousy of adolescence is visible when two girls clash in pursuit of the spotlight. They compete in frenzied moments of collision and unison as they flaunt with attitude. When their shaking and strutting turns to aggression, the audience holds its breath for them to reconcile.
And perhaps the most moving of all is the relationship between mother and daughter.
They move together briefly, lyrical and graceful in moments of maternal care. Then with rushed motions the daughter breaks away from her, eager for independence. They push and pull. Shattering flashes of the distance between mother and child reach far beyond the stage. And finally, in a moment of utmost tenderness, they are reunited in stillness, a beautiful closing.
BLACK GIRL: Linguistic Play is a performance that calls farther than just the dance floor and into one’s spirit. While solely danced by black girls, it is universal in that it fearlessly portrays self identity and the great impact that relationships have on it.
-Cali Montgomery Corkran